Managing Director, Project Development


About Africa50

Africa50 was established by African governments and the African Development Bank to help bridge Africa’s infrastructure funding gap by facilitating project development, mobilizing public and private sector finance, and investing in infrastructure on the continent. In 2012, African Heads of States in their Declaration on the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) called for innovative solutions to facilitate and accelerate infrastructure delivery in Africa. In response to this, and after broad consultations with African stakeholders, the African Development Bank proposed the establishment of a new delivery vehicle called Africa50.

As a pan-African infrastructure investment platform, Africa50’s mandate is to accelerate the development and financing of infrastructure projects on the continent, including through Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs). Africa50 focuses on medium- to large-scale infrastructure projects that have a high development impact while offering an appropriate risk-adjusted return to investors. Bringing project development and financing together in one platform, Africa50 seeks to provide support at every stage of the project cycle. Africa50 currently has 28 African countries as shareholders as well as the African Development Bank, the Central Bank of West African States and Bank Al-Maghrib with a committed shareholder capital of USD885 million, which is targeted to grow through the expansion of its existing shareholder base. More specifically, our mandate is focused on three strategic pillars:

  1. Early-stage development of bankable infrastructure projects
  2. Investing equity and quasi-equity in bankable infrastructure projects
  3. Mobilization of long-term savings globally for investment in African infrastructure

Africa50 is headquartered out of Casablanca, Morocco, where it enjoys the privileges and immunities of an international financial organization.

The Role – Managing Director Project Development

The Managing Director, reporting to the Africa50 CEO, will be responsible for leading a team in originating, structuring and executing on Africa50’s early-stage investment portfolio - the Africa50 Project Development pillar. As a leader of the project development business, the MD will play a key role in the recruiting, coaching and retaining of investment professionals focused on the execution of the project development pillar. The skilled individual will be adept at managing multiple stakeholder interests both internally and externally, interacting with government officials as shareholders and/or project sponsors, private sector capital providers, multi-lateral institutions, project sponsors and entrepreneurs and other such stakeholders as may be encountered in this line of work.

The Managing Director – Project Development will be a core member of Africa50’s Senior Leadership Team.

Key Responsibilities/Activities will include:

  • Work collaboratively with other Senior Leadership Team members to develop and implement a strategy for Africa50 to become a leader in infrastructure project development in Africa
  • Lead a team in originating, structuring and implementing early-stage infrastructure investments across Africa. The role will require the individual to balance the needs of the governments, private sector participants and finance providers, while meeting the risk/reward objectives of Africa50 financially, and in environmental, social and development impact areas
  • Develop an investment strategy to achieve a significant ramp-up in Africa50 project development investments with the goal of delivering on a strong pipeline of bankable infrastructure projects
  • Work collaboratively with the Managing Director - Project Finance, to develop and implement a pipeline of appropriate infrastructure projects in Africa
  • Given the early-stage nature of the projects, the Managing Director will lead and manage his team in developing and managing project budgets effectively, facilitating feasibility studies, procuring, negotiating and implementing a variety of contractors
  • Proactively manage the portfolio of early-stage investments and produce regular reports to the Senior Management Team, Investment Committees and the Board
  • Maintain a macro-overview of the African economic environment including regulatory and environmental frameworks and other trends as they may pertain to infrastructure in general and Africa50
  • Maintain a view of global trends in infrastructure and the environment and potential impact on infrastructure in Africa and Africa50 in particular
  • Work with the Legal and Risk departments to ensure that Africa50’s requirements in projects are reviewed, documented and mitigated accordingly
  • Effectively manage the operational risks within his/her areas of responsibility, and that his/her teams comply with all approved operational risk controls
  • Prioritize business activities against the availability of resources, manage internal budgets and meet planned targets in business results
  • Act as a Corporate Leader, owning the corporate vision and objectives and ensuring buy-in from the Project Development team and across the organization
  • Actively facilitate cross-departmental collaboration and ensure that the Africa50 group functions as One Team
  • Represent Africa50 at African and international forums and provide thought leadership through writing of articles and speaking at such platforms.

The Managing Director – Project Development as a member of the Senior Leadership Team, will assist the CEO in the management of Africa50 to ensure an efficient, well capitalised and impactful organisation.

Qualifications & Experience Requirements of the Role

  • At least a Master’s Degree in Business Administration, Public Administration, Strategic Management, Finance, or any other related discipline such as Engineering
  • A minimum of 25 years of relevant experience in early stage/project development investments in a large multinational finance institution or public/private organisation in the financial services industry, of which at least five (5) years will be at a management level.

Key Competencies of the Role

The following key competencies will be required of the role:

Building and Leading Effective Teams

  • Proven track record in building and leading high-performing, multiculturally diverse teams with various skill sets and aptitude
  • Ability to create and foster an environment that nurtures teamwork, innovation and delivery of results
  • Ability to identify and develop talent and productively use them in the execution of Africa50’s mandate
  • Ability to understand critical talent needs across the organization and create a network to fill critical gaps, promoting and enabling the cross-functional import and export of appropriately skilled and experienced people
  • Ability to manage people including the supervision of staff, performance measurement, implementation of performance development programmes and coaching and mentoring
  • Demonstrated ability to work in a cross-functional, multi-regional and cultural environment

Driving Success - Setting and Executing on Strategy

  • Can establish clear and effective strategies based on an in-depth understanding of market and industry trends
  • Ability to set a clear vision for the Project Development pillar to ensure the business establishes itself as a market leader among its peers
  • Excellent organisational skills and demonstrated capacity for strategic planning
  • Proven ability to identify and articulate policy issues, trade-offs, and priorities to provide sound advice to the CEO and Africa50’s senior management and Board of Directors
  • Demonstrated ability to think strategically, synthesize complex issues, and make critical decisions that translate into action for the organisation
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Ability and agility to manage complex institutional arrangements to deliver a high-performing organisation
  • Ability to work under pressure and maintain a high degree of performance across functions in a multicultural and distributed organisation
  • Ability to encourage others to recognize their contributions toward the success of the organization and stay motivated

Business Acumen and Analytical Thinking

  • Extensive experience and a successful track record in early-stage investing in infrastructure in Africa
  • Demonstrated an advanced understanding of the industry and its performance by remaining current on leading trends and interacting with industry stakeholders
  • Honed skills to identify and cultivate business opportunities and partnerships for the benefit of the organisation
  • Ability to recognize and be responsive to the needs of all clients and stakeholders of the organization, the Board of Directors, shareholder and non-shareholder governments, employees, and partners
  • Ability to evaluate key data and information, and provide insightful interpretation which informs key actions and decisions for the business unit
  • Willingness to drive innovation and promote the use of new technologies

Stakeholder Management and Relationship Building

  • Ability to build partnerships across diverse stakeholders and bring them together to deliver results aligned with the needs and long-term strategic priorities of Africa50
  • Understands the needs, drivers and constraints of stakeholders and applies this knowledge to develop common understanding across widely diverse parties
  • Maintains long-term, trusting relationships with stakeholders through ongoing relationship management
  • Recognizes organisational and department needs and identifies appropriate stakeholders to engage in decision-making to ensure buy-in and desirable outcomes
  • Exhibits a high degree of emotional intelligence - discretion, tact and sensitivity - in engaging with stakeholders at all levels, both internally and externally
  • Excellent interpersonal and negotiation skills with the ability to adapt one’s style to different cultural contexts
  • Maintains long-term relationships with key stakeholders who are critical to the organization

Language Requirements

  • Superior written and verbal communication skills in English and/or French, with a working knowledge of the other language.

Location of Role

The Managing Director - Project Development will be based in Casablanca, Morocco.

How to Apply

If you are interested in this position, click here to Apply Now.

We kindly request that only people meeting all the criteria highlighted above apply to this position. We will contact the shortlisted candidates within four weeks.

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